Flood watch issued in region

Catfish Creek Conservation Authority upgraded its warning about the possibility of flooding in the watershed early Thursday morning.

CCCA Water Management Technician Peter Dragunas issued a “flood watch” at 7:45 a.m. on Feb. 20 which is a step closer to an official warning.

“This is an assessment that a high probability exists for flooding of low-lying areas within the watershed,” Mr. Dragunas stated in a media release.

A “flood outlook” was issued by CCCA the day before.

Kettle Creek Conservation Authority issued a flood outlook on Tuesday, Feb. 18.

The flood watch was issued as the temperatures were expected to rise well above freezing on Thursday and overnight into Friday coupled with significant rainfall of up to 50 millimetres.

The warmer weather and rainfall were expected to melt much of the accumulated snow adding to the water flowing within Catfish Creek and other water courses in the area.

“The rainfall warning coupled with the updated snowpack assessment and expected deteriorating ice conditions on Catfish Creek and its tributaries indicate that potentially hazardous circumstances exist,” Mr. Dragunas stated.

The CCCA flood watch was to remain in effect until noon on Sunday, Feb. 23.

KCCA warned that the heavy ice pack in Port Stanley combined with warmer temperatures and rain meant an ice jam is “almost guaranteed” based on historical analysis.

The KCCA statement also advised residents stay away from all ice including Lake Whittaker and Dalewood Reservoir as the conditions were no longer safe for recreational activities.

Residents were advised to exercise caution near open bodies of water, to keep children and pets away from all waterways and to remove property from areas adjacent to streams, creeks, ditches or other open bodies of water.

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